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Duke Study: Minorities Dig Deeper In Their Pockets To Buy Homes

Coastal Properties via Flickr, Creative Commons

Blacks and Hispanics are paying significantly more in home prices than whites. That's according to new research out of Duke University that tracked more than two million home sales in Chicago, San Francisco, Washington D.C. and L.A.

Duke economics professor and lead author Pat Bayer says the disparities in purchase price were not tied to a buyers' income, wealth, or access to credit.

"The other thing that was interesting is that we looked at differences in the race of the seller, and what we found is that the differences in what black and Hispanic buyers were paying were similar regardless of the race of the seller," Bayer says.  "So our findings were not driven by sellers giving preferential treatment to buyers of the same race or systematically discriminating against buyers of a different race."

The study suggests blacks and Hispanics pay about 3.5 percent more for their houses, resulting in thousands of dollars in lost equity. Bayer says  minorities tend to be shown fewer houses by agents and are more likely to be first-time home buyers. He says it's possible those two factors could lead to more aggressive bidding.

Bayer explains the study in a video, here:

Fed up with the frigid winters of her native state, Catherine was lured to North Carolina in 2006. She grew up in Wisconsin where she spent much of her time making music and telling stories. Prior to joining WUNC, Catherine hosted All Things Considered and classical music at Wisconsin Public Radio. She got her start hosting late-nights and producing current events talk shows for the station's Ideas Network. She later became a fill-in talk show host and recorded books for WPR's popular daily program, Chapter A Day.
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